Easy identification of sustainable eco-friendly travel options, limited use of single-use plastics and financial incentives for accommodation providers who maximize energy efficiencies are the top three additional measures needed to make travel more sustainable according to Agoda’s Sustainable Travel Trends Survey. Establishing more protected areas to limit tourist numbers and removal of single-use bathroom amenities round out the top five global measures.
The findings from the Survey also revealed globally that overtourism and pollution of beaches and waterways are the top two concerns of the impact of tourism, with deforestation and energy inefficiencies (including overconsumption of electricity/water) ranking joint third.
Globally, the public considers Governments most accountable for making positive environmental changes around travel, followed by tourism authorities and individuals themselves. When it came to holding governments most accountable, those in Indonesia and UK were most likely to do so (36%), China followed not too far behind at 33%, with Australia and Malaysia in fourth and fifth spot (28% and 27% respectively). The markets most likely to cite themselves or individuals as most responsible for making changes to travelling sustainably were Thailand (30%), Japan (29%) and the US (28%). Meanwhile, China (11%), the UK (13%), and Vietnam (14%) were least likely to attribute responsibility to the individual.
COVID negatively impacts attitudes to sustainable travel
- More Malaysians are most concerned about overtourism, followed by polluted beaches and waterways and deforestation.
- Malaysians believe Governments are most responsible at 27%, followed by tourism authorities at 25%, and themselves at 16% when it came to making changes to make travel more sustainable.
- Malaysians pledge to always look for eco-friendly accommodations, manage their waste during their travel period and switch off air conditioner and lights when leaving their room when they travel post-COVID-19.
- Practices that are considered find most helpful to travel sustainably by Malaysians are accommodations using #1 renewable energy, #2 key cards to power electricity in accommodation, and destinations that are not high-density tourist spots.
- When asked what practices Malaysians associate with sustainability, 40% considered the use of renewable resources, followed energy practice at 36%, and eco-friendly building design/furnishings at 29%.
- The additional measures to help make travel more sustainable according to Malaysians are easy identification of eco-friendly travel options, limiting single-use plastics, and providing financial incentives to accommodation providers who maximize energy efficiency.